Audit of mathematics learning support in Ireland in 2015 – the key findings

Anthony Cronin, Cormac Breen, Maura Clancy, Jonathan Cole, Diarmuid O'Se

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review

Abstract

In 2015 the Irish Mathematics Learning Support Network (IMLSN) commissioned a comprehensive audit of the extent and nature of mathematics learning support (MLS) provision on the island of Ireland. An online survey was sent to 32 institutions, including universities, institutes of technology, further education and teacher training colleges, and a 97% response rate was achieved. While the headline figure – 84% of institutions that responded to the survey provide MLS – sounds good, deeper analysis reveals that the true state of MLS is not so solid. For example, in 25% of institutions offering MLS, only five hours per week (at most) of physical MLS are available, while in 20% of institutions the service is provided by only one or two staff members. Furthermore, training of tutors is minimal or non-existent in at least half of the institutions offering MLS. The results provide an illuminating picture, however, identifying the true state of MLS in Ireland is beneficial only if it informs developments in the years ahead. This talk will present some of the findings of the survey in more depth along with conclusions and recommendations. Key among these is the need for institutions to recognise MLS as a vital element of mathematics teaching and learning strategy at third level and devote the necessary resources to facilitate the provision of a service which can grow and adapt to meet student requirements.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 27 May 2016
Event10th Annual Irish Workshop on Mathematics Learning and Support Centres - National University of Ireland Galway, Galway, Ireland
Duration: 27 May 2016 → …

Conference

Conference10th Annual Irish Workshop on Mathematics Learning and Support Centres
CountryIreland
CityGalway
Period27/05/2016 → …

Keywords

  • mathematics support
  • survey
  • Ireland
  • third-level education

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